9 People, 1 Question || Mummy Bloggers on Being Ready to Have Kids, Greatest Fear & Reward

A couple of days ago, seemed to be one of the few days I actually wanted to watch TV and had the remote in hand. After a few minutes of scrolling (and realising that we had a lot of sport channels!), I still couldn't find anything particularly interesting. I had worked on this post earlier in the day so mummy matters were on my mind. I finally settled for a show called Born Every Minute or something like that, which showed live child birth stories. One of the women was 40 and was just about to have her first child.

I'm such a squeamish person, and half the time had my back to the TV. I couldn't look. Even Tee who is toughie of sort had to say "oh my goodness why are we watching this". At the point when they actually opened up a woman's tummy for a CS, he thought he had had enough. But thankfully he still promises that when the time comes, he'd be an extra toughie and be with me all the way. God willing.

It's the reality of life isn't it? And the women seemed to totally forget the pain once the little baby was placed in their hands.

I'm obviously at the stage where a lot of my friends are having kids. I feel like I'm saying 'congratulations!' to a new person every day. They make it look pretty do-able and even almost glam - even though they swear your life will never be the same again. On the other hand, some of my friends say "I'm just not ready".

It's this latter statement that gets me thinking. For women who know they want kids, at what point (if any!) did they decide they were ready for this! Was it an Eureka moment? Simply a passage of time? Wanting to 'live life' before the kids come?

So I turned to some mummy bloggers / influencers who share tips and tricks about raising kids.

top black mummy bloggers

And I asked them that one question.

"At what point did you know you were ready for a baby". I also asked them to share their greatest fears about motherhood and what has been their greatest reward.

As a bonus and for new mums or aspiring mothers, they also include one item they think every new mother needs for her sanity!

Enjoy! Xx


1. Aisha O' Reilley - @aishaandlife

  • Works full time in advertising. Second love is blogging - the brain behind natural hair blog My Fro & I and most recently Aisha & Life. I'm now sharing my story of motherhood as well as hair and beauty.
  • Number of Kids: 1...for now. Hope to have one more. I think siblings are irreplaceable blessings
  • Had first child at age: 30
  • www.aishaandlife.com
  • One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!): Something that makes her feel cute. Be it shoes, lipstick, a wig, perfume. Something just for indulgence sake to remind her she's still a woman, not 'just' a mom. Giving birth rocks you and changes your life. It helps to keep something of your past.

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

Is anyone ever ready! I honestly can't say that I was ready but I prayed for my son. I knew I wanted to be a mom when I saw a life with my husband with my son in it. 

My greatest fear about motherhood was being completely responsible for another human being. I was barely getting the hang of it myself and now I had to make sure his needs were met before my own. What I didn't realise is that it's pretty automatic and starts from when your child is still in your womb.

My biggest reward... it's hard to choose just one. From the indescribable emotion I felt the first time I met him to helping him reach his developmental milestones, to his infectious toothless smile! There's always an incredible reward awaiting after the storm. It's like nothing I've ever experienced. 


2. Bibiana Yetty - @BibianaYetty
  • Dentist; Postgraduate Student (Speciality training)
  • Youtube Vlogger: BibianaYettyVlogs (Vlogging about Faith, Marriage, Motherhood & Life)
  • Mother of three:  (three and under/ 3 year old twins and 9 month old baby.
  • First child (twins) at 27 and no more kids! We have three, we are outnumbered!… But I guess never say never.

One item for a new mum's sanity: My favourite item is my baby carrier. They are great for travelling and just getting around when a buggy isn't so convenient. I also love the fact that I can work out while baby carrying which has really helped with my postpartum fitness journey. My baby sleeps much better after baby wearing and is less fussy, which means I can study and have quiet time. The benefit of a baby carrier is that you can have both your hands free so you can still get things done around the house. The twins were only two when we had a new born. So having a baby carrier meant I could have both my hands free to push a buggy and play with my older kids. For my first pregnancy I used a twin baby carrier… So you can see I’m a big fan of baby wearing. My advice would be to try different ones on in the store first. Everyone is different. I’m over 6 foot so I need one which is comfortable for me and can adjust to my taller frame, but also having one with great back support is essential. I have a sling style baby carrier too which is ideal for nursing and I love the intimate feeling I get with baby wearing, you can easily observe your child’s interaction to the wonders of the world around them.

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

I always wanted to be a mum. I was that teenager in church that would volunteer to help babysit people's kids. My help was always welcome. And I know why, Motherhood is a joyful journey but it also has its challenges. After helping a single mum of twins I was convinced I would never have twins myself. I guess God had other plans. 

As soon as I got married I knew I was ready to be a mother.  I had just graduated and was left at a cross road between going back to University to pursue postgraduate specialty training, working or starting a family. People always made it seem like you have to give up one for another. I always wanted to be a very hands on mum but I never felt led to be a stay at home mum. So after a lot of prayer my husband and I agreed it was possible to do it all. I truly am grateful for his support because I often doubted myself. By our first year anniversary I was 9 months pregnant with twins. 

My greatest fear about motherhood was doubting if I would be a good mum. I was just about getting the hang of this wife life and with a husband who worked abroad at the time, I feared if I would be able to cope with a baby too. I doubted if I would be able to get the balance right with marriage, motherhood and career.  By the time I found out that I was pregnant with twins. I pretty much felt worse. I cried during my first scan (and it wasn't tears of joy). I feared a lot of the complications people spoke about. Everyone wants twins but the truth is it's not easy. And for me I was high risk with very large babies (8 pounds each).  I tried to get advise from other mums and I was often given very negative responses.  I would definitely advise limiting the amount of time you spend with people giving such advise. You will find yourself fearing things you never feared before.


My greatest rewards so far has been watching them grow, the way they love on each other and their love for learning. It also helps when at least one of your three kids looks like you.  

I believe my greatest reward hasn't even been achieved yet. My aim is to parent with purpose and not perfection. I'm more concerned about their souls than their brains. A child's intelligence can help them go places in life, but the character reflected from their soul is what will determine whether or not they will do anything significant once they get there.


3. Meiko (aka Mercy to my friends and Iko to my family!). - @immeiko
  • Photographer, blogger and breastfeeding peer supporter.  www.immeiko.com
  • 2 Kids. We're more than happy with two and don't want anymore. But if for whatever reason a 3rd comes, I would want a 4th. I like even numbers. LOL! 
  • Had first child at age: 24
  • One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!): A baby carrier of some sort. Be it just wrapper or a more fancy carrier. Babies need to be carried a lot in the early days. I still back my toddler sometimes too. My favourite carrier is my Ergobaby. I highly recommend it for its versatility. Such a lifesaver!

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

Hmm! I'm one of those women that always wanted to be a mother. When I was a teenager, I dreamt of being a 20 year old mummy. So when we got married there was no hesitation and God blessed us with a baby immediately.

My greatest fear was not being able to stay at home and care for my kids in their early years. It's something I feel very strongly about. I'm grateful that I've been able to so far. My greatest reward is waking up and seeing their beautiful faces, watching them grow makes my heart burst with pride and joy. It may sound cliché but I really love being their mummy. 


4. Oby O - @oby_o
  • In-House General Counsel at a Quasi-Government Agency in Nigeria, and in my spare time I blog at www.playsuitsandlawsuits.com. 
  • 2 kids – J and CJ. 
  • Had first child at age – 25
  • How many more kids you hope to have – Hahahaha!!! 

• One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!) – For me it's a breast pump!! If you plan on nursing, then chances are you’ll need a reliable breast pump for expressing milk. In those early weeks after your baby’s birth, where your munchkin eats every 2 hours, the only way you can get some decent sleep is to express milk for someone else to help with a few (or the entire night lol) feeding session(s). And if you’re heading back to work or you can’t always be with your baby, you’ll want to invest in a durable, portable, daily-use pump.


At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. 

I've always known I wanted children, and my husband was baby-crazy even before we had gotten engaged, but we decided to wait a year after marriage before getting pregnant. At the time we got married, we both lived in different states in Nigeria, so we decided we were not ready to have a baby until we were living together. So while we got (traditionally) married in December, 2012, we didn’t have our first baby, J, until September, 2014 – almost 2 years after. 
Looking at it in retrospect, I believe there’s probably no way to be absolutely ready. I mean, it's difficult to be ready for lessons you haven’t learned, sleep deprivation you haven’t experienced, and responsibilities you haven’t carried. You can (and probably should) prepare financially and other such logistics but that's as much as you can do - prepare. 

Thankfully, we seem to figure out parenting as we go. My babies have been my teachers, my inspiration, and my muses — “readiness” or not. 

With being ready for our second baby, CJ, we decided to do a 2 year gap between both kiddos. Personally, I felt I needed some time to mentally and physically prepare for another pregnancy. Also, we felt the gap would give us the opportunity to enjoy each child as an individual, spread the cost of having kids over a longer period of time and reuse a lot of our baby gear. 

What was your greatest fear about motherhood?

When I got pregnant with J, I read a lot about what it’s like to become a new parent – the exhaustion, the feeling of overwhelm, the void of mothering, the uncertainty and unpredictability that surrounds motherhood. So even though I felt I was ready to have a baby, I had varying moments of fear and concern.

 I was VERY worried about labor and child birth (honestly!!) I was also worried about the type of mother I would be, if I would be available for my kids. I was afraid of how much my life could change; afraid that I will come to define myself only as a mom and become so overwhelmed and completely consumed by this lovely little person that I may lose interest in my friends, my career, my hobbies, furthering my education, the Law and so many other things that define me.

But overtime most of those fears have disappeared with raising the boys, because becoming a mother has made me more of myself. I haven’t lost my sense of self, rather I have blossomed into a better, happier, more grounded, version of myself - I've had to put aside selfishness, and learn things like patience, organization, forgiveness, cooking, multi-tasking, responsibility, and so much more. 

Now, after 2 kids, I still have my fears about motherhood - a different kind of fear. My greatest fear now is realizing and owning the responsibility that comes with being a mother. Realizing that my life, my choices, my perspective, my opinion, my attitude, my experiences, would form, develop and deeply affect another human being. It's scary but it makes me even more intentional in raising my boys as God-fearing, kind, cultured and well-grounded children. 

What has been your greatest reward?

My boys (and this includes my husband to be honest) have brought a lot of purpose and meaning to my life. There are plenty of ways to have a fulfilling meaningful life without a husband and kids, but these guys do it for me, every day (well not every day but most times. Lol!)

The absolute greatest reward, so far, is watching J and CJ grow up every day and knowing that I have a hand in that. It's an awesome feeling!! 


5. Ifeyinwa Anthony - @ifieca
  • Paralegal/Post Grad student/ small business owner - @asatosoaps
  • Number of Kids: 4 and maybe one or two more, finance permitting. UK School fees are expensive! 
  • Had first child at age : 20
  • One item every mother must have for sanity: A sense of humour!. You gotta have the will to laugh at certain things otherwise you'll lose it...like when you walk into your child standing over the toilet with your make up bag in their hands and about £200 worth of stuff in the loo.

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

There wasn't really ever a conscious 'when'...I am still idealistic or slightly naive in that I believe that things happen when they are supposed to happen and I still live my life around that. 
So, essentially, there was never a time when I was like okay this is the time, I got married it happened and I remodeled my life around the baby/ies.

My greatest fear, that's a toughie. I think like most people you wonder if you're going to be a 'good' mother but in time you get to realise motherhood is quite a personal journey which everyone experiences differently. As long as I do what is reasonable and best for my kids, then that's it really!..

My greatest reward has been watching my kids grow before my eyes. There is nothing like it..I still remember their pregnancies and labours very vividly so it's still a bit weird coming to terms with the fact they are turning into actual real people and not my teeny babies anymore!.


6. Tola Omoniyi - @tolafam21
  • SEO Manager and Mummy blogger at www.callmemummy.com
  • Number of Kids: 2 (5 year old girl & 2 year old boy). I've told my husband if I start getting broody again he needs to get me a puppy! Honestly, I think I'm done 
  • Had first child at age: 26
  • One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!): An electric breast pump! They're an absolute life saver.

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

When did I decide I was ready to have a baby? I never got around to deciding, it just happened!! I always said once I got married we'd take at least a year or so to settle down into married life with hubby and travel a bit before the kids arrive and all that jazz. Obviously, I spoke to hubby about this and he said sure sure, that's fine (little did I know he was ready to be dad!). So after we got married the plan was for me to see a GP and get on contraceptives.

However, as God would have it, I got pregnant during our honeymoon and the rest as they say is history! I'm thankful for the way it turned out because there really is no perfect time to have a child, there will always be one excuse or the other if you're looking for one. Now my second child, was a whole different story though, he was overplanned, hahahaha! 

I was absolutely terrified of becoming a mum! It was so bad that once while I was pregnant with my first child, I had a dream that I forgot her at home and went to work! I think I was just scared I'd be a terrible mum. Thankfully, that hasn't happened and so far so good, kids (and myself) are doing alright! 

The greatest reward for me is waking up each morning to happy smiles and knowing they're doing alright. Yes, we've got our ups and downs, they wind me up and annoy me like no one else (and vice versa) but they also make me smile and laugh the most and when they say I love you mummy out of the blues, that just makes everything perfect.


7. Chimene Mala - @mummys_corner
  • Works in Retail Banking and in my spare time I blog at www.mummyscorner.co.uk and I film videos on Youtube - Mummy’s Corner.
  • 3 children (2 boys and a girl). I originally wanted to have 6 children but after my first, we decided on half the amount so I guess no more children for me?
  • Had first child at age -  22
  • One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!): In my opinion mums can never have enough wipes! You’ll be surprised at the amount of nappies you’ll need to change in a day. Wipes are also very versatile, you can pretty use them to clean anything.

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

  

I didn’t really get the chance to be “ready” for a baby. When we were planning our wedding, my husband and I decided that we would not try for children until I was 25 years old but little did we know that God had other plans us, our first baby arrived before our 1st year anniversary.

 I remember thinking that I was way too young to be having a baby, my greatest fear was that I wouldn’t be able to cope, that I would require help from my parents at all times (because of my age) but until today, I am still amazed at how well I coped with motherhood first time round. I look back on those first days and I wonder how I just managed to get on with everything. My husband returned to work after 2 weeks and it was just me and my boy all day long every day. Apart from breastfeeding, I seemed to know how to bathe, feed and look after my son like a pro! In fact, I feel like I’m struggling more with motherhood now that I have three kids (maybe it’s just my mind I don’t know). 

Of all the things I have been blessed with, I cherish motherhood the most and when I look at all three of my children smiling and generally happy, my heart is at peace knowing that I’m doing a good job as their mummy. Sometimes when I’m up to my eyeballs with mum guilt, my children will randomly say things like “I love mummy” or “you’re the best mummy in the world” which reminds me that THEY are my greatest reward in this world. 

 


8.  Tanaka Sotinwa - @whatmummywore

Blogger at www.whatmummywore.blogspot.co.uk

  • 2 kids and no more!
  • Had first child at age - 32
  • One Item every new mother must have (for her sanity!) - pre-cooked meals stored in the freezer for the first month or you will starve!!

At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

I remember crossing a threshold from life still being a bit about me and my husband and my friends, to deciding it was our relationship first, and then everyone else next. 
For whatever reason, that triggered a desire to expand "our" world. We had always wanted to wait till 2 years after our marriage so it worked out perfectly. I don't think you're ever ready to be a parent though. No matter what you think you know from what you've heard, or all your experience with kids, nothing prepares you for your own parenthood reality. If you've never tasted an apple, you've never tasted it. Until you taste it. 

My greatest fear was and always probably will be messing up my kids. This makes me strive to be the best possible version of myself so I can be the best mum that I can be - with God's help! The greatest reward has been learning about myself through them. They are the most honest reflection of who we are & when I see things I don't like in them, often times I find I'm exactly the same! (Even as silly as waiting till the last minute and hopping to the loo! I can't be mad at her because I do it! So I must change & she will!). That & their unconditional love.


    9. Oluwatoyin Onigbanjo - @augustsecrets_toyin
    • Journalist; Baby and toddler food blogger
    • Number of kids: 2 and no more! 
    • One item: Nipple moisturising cream, and gosh, a pacifier.
    Toyin.JPG

    At what point did you decide you were ready for a baby. What was your greatest fear about motherhood & what has been your greatest reward?

    I decided I was ready for a baby at 4 months after my marriage, and I got pregnant at 8 months. I was so scared I may be delayed though.

    My greatest fear was, "what will my baby eat". How will I get to understand the feelings of someone who cannot speak for himself?" Lol!


    My greatest reward? Not here yet. They would be seeing my children fulfilling purpose. But for now, watching them grow into intelligent kids is my greatest reward.


    Well, I guess there's no consensus. Some know they are ready immediately. Some say you're never really ready you just have to jump in! Noted mummies, noted!

    And I can just say how Tanaka's suggestion of having cooked food in the freezer made me burst out laughing!  But that's so practical and true. And I guess like Ify said, you will need a sense of humour.

    I absolutely loved this post and I hope you did. Interesting how different we all are right? There's hardly any right way or time. Some had kids in their early twenties, others got to the 30s. Some want six, most are happy with two. I also love how aside being mummies, they all pursue several other interests -it's amazing and oh so inspiring!

    If you're a mummy, What's your experience - when did you become ready (and what's your recommended item for new mums!) if you're not, at what point do you think you'll want to have your kids, and how many are you looking to have? I'll love to hear from you!

    Love,

    Kachee... xx

    pS: This post was supposed to go up in March for Mother's Day, but my blog break happened. I bet some of the mummies have totally forgotten about this feature! Sincere apologies. But as a bit of a stretch it's Mother's Day in the US on the 14th of May. So not too bad maybe?


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